Pretoria - A man who underwent a hernia operation and a prostate biopsy, but on the day of his discharge after the doctors were satisfied with his condition had a stroke while leaving the hospital premises, lost his legal bid to sue the doctors who had treated him.
Both the man and his partner (who are not being identified) claimed damages from the doctors who treated him at the Life Wilgers Hospital in Pretoria East.
The Gauteng High Court, Pretoria, concluded that the man had suffered from various medical ailments, including obesity, when he underwent the hernia operation and the biopsy.
Judge Nicolene Janse van Nieuwenhuizen said after listening to the medical experts that it could not be found that the stroke was due to the operation, which was said to be a fairly straightforward procedure.
The man underwent the operation at the Wilgers hospital in February 2016. Both he and his partner claimed that the doctors who were treating him were negligent in the performance of their respective medical duties and that this caused him to suffer a stroke with infraction to the right side of the brain.
The doctors testified that the procedures were uneventful, and the plaintiff recuperated in a normal ward subsequent to the biopsy and the hernia operation. The doctors visited the plaintiff in the ward and were satisfied that his condition justified his discharge a few days after the procedures.
After suffering the stroke shortly after his discharge, he was immediately admitted to the intensive care unit at the hospital.
The court heard that the plaintiff was 69 years old at the time and was classified as being obese. He had hypertension, high cholesterol and suffered chronic venous statis in his lower legs.
An enlarged heart and an unfolded aorta, possibly due to hypertension, was also diagnosed prior to the procedures, for which he took chronic medication.
An assessment prior to the procedures indicated that the plaintiff was an extremely high-risk candidate for developing a thrombose-embolism.
The judge found that the plaintiff and his partner had failed to prove that the stroke was the fault of the doctors who had performed the procedures on him.